Since the hype train for Beauty and the Beast has finally arrived to all of our stations, I bet everyone is tired of all that Disney hoopla. Let us here at ScreenGeek fill that giant CG furry buffalo monster sized hole in your hearts. We’ve got a little bit everything; lying conmen, scary mirrors, lovely robots, and a bunch of other stuff we know you’ll love.
Let us know what you’re loving this week in the comments.
Iron Fist (2017)
Action / Adventure
Danny Rand (Jones) was only 10 years old when he and his family disappeared over the Himalayas in their jet. Their bodies were never found and, as such, were presumed dead. Danny comes home after 15 years, and looking rather homeless. No one takes him seriously and is making quick enemies of the people he grew up with whom he thought were his friends.
Quick-paced and full of content, this series is a must watch. I must admit, the actor who plays Ward Meachum (Tom Pelphrey) his been a favorite of mine since his soap opera days. That being said, he and the others who play as part of the Meachum family do a wonderful job portraying their money hungry characters, to an uncomfortable level. They use all of their power and influence against Danny, but the question still remains; why did it take so long for him to come back if he survived the crash all those years ago?
Recommended by Kelsey Mejiarodarte
It’s hard enough having your parents murdered when you’re only a little kid. (Just ask Bruce Wayne). It’s harder still, when one of said parents was the one doing the murdering. And it’s even harder when you’re the one convicted of those murders, because said murderous parent was operating under the influence of sinister supernatural forces, and nobody believed you. Welcome to Tim’s world….
When Tim is finally paroled from prison, having managed to convince himself it was all just a bad dream, he finds one thing stopping him from moving on with his life. Sister, Kaylie, who also survived the bloodbath, and knows full well what the cause was: a haunted mirror. And she’s decided that tonight’s that night that she and Tim do something about it.
Both Karen Gillan (Dr Who) and Brenton Thwaites (The Signal) fully convince as the damaged siblings, and the movie plays out as they return to their old home, and spend the night battling the evil within. The film cuts between this, and flashbacks to the event, with their ill-fated parents ably portrayed by Katee Sackhoff (BSG) and Ron Livingstone (Band Of Brothers). It’s sad. It’s scary. It’s your Saturday night sorted….
Available on iTunes, Amazon, Google Play, and Vudu.
Recommended by Simon Andrews
12 Angry Men (1957)
Arguably the greatest courtroom drama of all time, this film doesn’t take place in the courtroom at all – but rather, in the jury room. The trial is over; all that awaits is the verdict.
A Hispanic teenager from a New York City slum stands accused of killing his father. Twelve white men will determine his fate. A guilty verdict means the boy will get the death penalty; a not guilty verdict must be delivered if there is any possibility he is innocent. One by one, the dozen gathered men deliver their opinion: guilty, guilty, guilty. No deliberation is necessary. That is, until Juror #8’s turn. He’s the only “not guilty” among them, to the consternation of the other eleven.
What follows is #8’s effort (we never even get to know most of the men’s names – only their personalities) to convince the rest of the jurors of the existence of reasonable doubt. From dissection of flimsy evidence; to revealing the prejudices of the other men, he wages a desperate battle to save the life of a young man he can’t be sure is guilty.
Despite its straightforward plot, tiny cast, and single location, this film is a classic for a reason. It’s a master class in acting (featuring the incomparable Henry Fonda as #8) and directing – the use of light, shadow, camera angles, and subtle music to slowly build tension are brilliant – and its themes are timelessly relevant. If you enjoy intense, character-driven drama, this is a film you will never forget.
Available on Google Play, Vudu, and the PlayStation Network
Recommended by Jennifer Huneycutt
Chappie is a funny, entertaining, and unexpectedly sentimental movie about a sentient robot being raised by gangsters in Johannesburg. This film received harsh critic response of which it deserves almost none – just because it isn’t a USA central, muscle car, muscle people filled movie. Instead, the film is set in Johannesburg, but has something else to say. It’s a thought provoking piece on society, and the emotion carries it from start to finish.
I went into Chappie as a huge fan of the gritty action and social commentary of District 9. I expected that this would be more of the same. Both are still present, but surprisingly, with laughs. This artificially intelligent robot is one of the most human characters to take to the screen in a long time, and takes us through our childhoods at 100mph. This isn’t your typical Science-Fiction flick, and talks about black sheep, being different, which fittingly describes its place in the genre. A heart-wrenching lot of fun, this is worth a watch.
Available on iTunes, Amazon, Google Play, Vudu, Fandora, and the Microsoft and Playstation Store.
Recommended by Rory McNeill
Comedy / Series
Anybody wanted to know what love is like for today’s generation? Well you can find out with the Netflix original series, Love. Coming back for its second season, the show follows Mickey played by Gillian Jacobs and Gus played by Paul Rust as they try to make sense of themselves and what the relationship is between the two. That’s the basics.
What the show tells us is the complicated life of people in their early to mid thirties as they go on wondering what the fuck they are doing with themselves and why they even bother. The comedy is very relatable and the situations that each character finds themselves in is absolutely hilarious, whether you’ve been there or not. This being a by product of director and writer Judd Apatow, you kind of know what you’re getting into in the realm of comedy with hints of drama. Sit down and give this show the binge watch treatment as each episode is easily digestible and will leave you wanting that third season by the time you’re done. Go watch Love.
Recommend by Mark Salcido
Sneaky Pete (2015)
Crime Drama Series
Sneaky Pete is an American crime drama series about con artist Marius Josipovic (Ribisi), who has recently been released from jail, but is far from free. Vince Lonigan (Cranston) will not allow Marius to start anew; Marius stole a hundred grand from him before landing in jail and now he must find a way to pay him back, or his brother will lose a finger. While in jail, Marius’s jail-mate, Pete Murphy (Embry), told Marius all sorts of stories about his perfect childhood, all of which Marius finds quite annoying. Marius has an amazing memory, however, and decides to use it to assume Pete’s identity and try to con Pete’s family. The real Pete Murphy hasn’t seen his family since he was a kid, so they don’t know what he looks like as an adult and take Marius at his word.
Nowhere in the genre listing of this show does the word “comedy” appear. Mostly, it isn’t. However, some of the situations are a little outlandish, and the characters are very outlandish. The quirk makes for a unique chemistry between the characters, writing, and direction that must be watched to know where I am coming from. Admittedly, I binge-watched this in two days, and am thinking about having another go at it as there are a lot of details that will now make sense the second time through. By the way, I love anything Bryan Cranston is in, so, bonus for me and whomever feels the same way.
Recommended by Kelsey Mejiarodarte
Dear Zachary: A Letter to a Son About His Father (2008)
Dear Zachary: A Letter to a Son About His Father is a documentary written for a child about a father he will never meet. When the director’s friend was murdered by an unstable ex-lover, he wanted to create something to give to the child born of that relationship. What was created was the freaking saddest movie you will ever see. Period. Beyond sucking tears out of your soul like a depressed vampire, Dear Zachary is a beautifully crafted film. It is obvious that Zachary’s father was loved, and that Zachary himself is a child who was born cared for and wanted. That love fuels this movie.
Well paced, with thoughtful moments and interviews that ask great questions from interesting people, this is a documentary unlike any other. A small story without a major global impact, but still, it sticks with you. If you feel like feeling, really feeling, Dear Zachary is the movie for you.
Available on Netflix, Fandor, Sundance Now, iTunes, Google Play, and the Microsoft and Playstation Stores.
Recommended by Sylvia Maixner